An Alternate Route

And so for at least a while I have a fairly substantial commute. It isn’t the distance or the time involved with my commute I find so taxing. Rather, it’s the demands imposed upon my psyche which include stop and go traffic upon fairways that would otherwise lope along at about 70 miles per hour.

During those first few days of my new commute I found myself less engrossed with the music on my XM radio than I was with the increasing temerity of my vortex of depression. If I may paraphrase from “A Christmas Story”, what hath brought me to this lowly state? It is with this frame of mind I decided I would take arms and would not allow myself to wallow.

Perused a number of internet maps did I. And slowly, alternate routes didst appear unto me as though the slow realizations of the distinctions of gender based thought processes eventually unfold.

My first intentions towards adopting this alternate dissolved as the breezes capture the good intentions of January resolutions. This was due to the misconception of initial visions of clear traffic patterns which proved as illusory as the Sirens of Anthemusa. My next day’s resolve held true and I was rewarded with both a shorter and more reasonably traveled commute.

The discovered alternative does not entirely obviate the necessity of my negotiating the east bound on-ramp of the Tappan Zee bridge. This must still be endured, albeit for a substantially shorter duration than that to which I had been previously subjected.

As I re-enter the highway that would deposit me onto the bridge, one cannot help but notice the look and attitude of my fellow travelers. Some allow their rage to grab hold of their veneer of civility. In so doing, these souls allow themselves to parade their frustration in the form of blaring horns or lane jockeying. Most submerge their emotions underneath straight ahead stares and clenched teeth.

And it is within this defined backdrop I noticed a legitimately placed, professionally displayed sign on the right shoulder of the road designed to capture the attention and imagination of those who would chance upon this bridge.

The sign advised the following: “Life is worth living.” Underneath this not so cleverly imposed admonition, the author further instructed the so inclined traveler, of a suicide prevention hotline telephone number. Upon reflection, it became apparent this sign was designed in order to thwart those who might have allowed themselves to toss their fates to the merciless maw of the Hudson River.

I literally laughed out loud, and to my windshield I exclaimed, “Thank you. I appreciate that.”

Although the sign was, in all likelihood, designed to address potential jumpers, it seems the message is more appropriate for those who suffer daily traffic.

Wonder why they don’t also consider, as an option, an alternate route.

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